Amanda Berry Among Abducted Women Found Alive

Three women who disappeared separately about 10 years ago have been found alive in a house in Cleveland, Ohio - just a few miles from where they went missing.

Police said they thought Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michele Knight had been tied up in the property - and had been there since they vanished.

The trio, who went missing in their teens or early 20s, have now been released from hospital after going there for checks and were being reunited with relatives.

They are said to be in good health after being found in a residential area just south of the city.

Three brothers were arrested. One of the men, 52-year-old Ariel Castro, lived at the home, while the others, aged 50 and 54, lived elsewhere.

Ms Berry, who was 16 at the time, disappeared on April 21, 2003, when she called her sister to say she was getting a lift home from her job at a Burger King outlet.

Ms DeJesus went missing aged 14 on her way home from school about a year after Ms Berry's disappearance.

The third woman, Ms Knight, had been missing since 2002. She is believed to have been 20 at the time.

Cheering crowds gathered on the street near the property where the women were found.

The long nightmare for the trio ended when Ms Berry reached through a crack in the front door and called for help.

Neighbour Charles Ramsey heard her screaming and tried to get her out through the door, but could not pull it open.

So he kicked the bottom open and she crawled through carrying a little girl.

Another neighbour Anna Tejeda said Ms Berry was nervous and crying, and dressed in pyjamas and old sandals.

Ms Tejeda said she gave her telephone to Ms Berry, who then called police.

In a recording of the 911 call, she told the emergency dispatcher: "I'm Amanda Berry. I've been kidnapped. I've been missing for 10 years. I'm free. I'm here now."

She said she had been taken by someone - and begged officers to arrive at the home on Cleveland's west side "before he gets back".

When police arrived, they found the two other women who were allegedly being held captive.

They were also rescued and police said a six-year-old also was found in the home, but the child's identity or relationship to anyone in the home has not been not revealed.

Mr Ramsey explained how he rescued Ms Berry, saying: "I hear this girl screaming and she's going nuts.

"So I come outside and I know there's nobody supposed to be screaming next door to my house because there's no girl that lives in that house.

"When I came to the front door and looked at her she said 'My name is Amanda Berry - please get me out of this house'."

Kayla Rogers, a childhood friend of Ms DeJesus, told The Plain Dealer newspaper: "I've been praying, never forgot about her, ever.

"This is amazing. This is a celebration. I'm so happy. I just want to see her walk out of those doors so I can hug her."

Ms Berry's cousin Tasheena Mitchell told the newspaper: "I'm going to hold her, and I'm going to squeeze her and I probably won't let her go."

In January, a prison inmate was sentenced to a further four and a half years after admitting he provided a false burial tip in the disappearance of Ms Berry.

Two men arrested for questioning in the disappearance of Ms DeJesus in 2004 were released from the city jail in 2006 after officers did not find her body during a search of the men's house.

No Amber Alert was issued the day Ms DeJesus failed to return home because no one witnessed her abduction.

That angered her father, Felix DeJesus, who said in 2006 he believed the public would listen even if the alerts became routine.

"The Amber Alert should work for any missing child," he said at the time.

"It doesn't have to be an abduction. Whether it's an abduction or a runaway, a child needs to be found. We need to change this law."

But Cleveland police argued the alerts should be reserved for cases in which danger is imminent and the public can be of help in locating the suspect and child.